The iMedia Social Media Conference was held in Edmonton over the span of two days: March 11 & 12, 2016. From advertising tips to content creation – even crisis management – the SOS team took it all in! Read about what each of our team members thought of the weekend!
In a few sentences, how would you sum up your experience at the iMedia conference this weekend?
Amanda: iMedia was a great experience to learn and meet new people who all have a passion for marketing and social media. It was nice to get a different perspective on how others utilize their advertising techniques as well as hear about what worked for them and what didn’t for their campaigns.
Robyn: iMedia was awesome! I loved the energy and the community that was there! I met a bunch of new people and tweeted more than I ever have in my life. All of that helped me feel plugged in and overall inspired.
Kerri: I was very impressed with the iMedia Social Media Conference. The conference really proved the strength of our local Edmonton community in the marketing and advertising industry. There was a well balanced variety of breakout sessions which related to both agency and in-house marketing strategies.
Lindsey: I had such a fun time at iMedia! There was a fantastic mix of engaging participants and knowledgeable sessions to keep the energy going all weekend. I even made some new friends from the event’s hashtag: #iMedia16! I feel so grateful to have had the opportunity to represent SOS Media Corp at the conference.
What was your biggest take-away from the keynote speakers, Carson McKee and Casie Stewart?
Amanda: What I liked about Carson’s talk was how social media isn’t new anymore, yet we can still make it new depending on the type of content that we create. We shouldn’t be posting for the sake posting; there should be a thought process behind it. I loved Casie Stewart (seriously jealous of her amazing energy and work ethic)! My biggest takeaway had to be about social media influencers and how to take advantage of them from a brand perspective. She was also very inspiring to listen to while talking about how hard she had to work to create a name for herself and seeing it pay off. Never stop trying and work hard for what you want.
Robyn: Carson challenged me to ask questions like “where are you and why are you there”? A business doesn’t need to be on all platforms to be successful; in fact, it’s probably better not to be. As for Casie, I first must say: My word! The energy in that woman! I loved her fire and passion! There were so many great things that she said, one in particular being “Wanna know a good way to build relationships? GET OFF YOUR PHONE!” I think I was even on my phone when she said that… So clearly I needed to hear that!
Kerri: Carson McKee emphasized the ability of a marketer to be able to answer “What content are you pushing out and why?” Posting frequently does not necessarily mean more engagement. Choose to create awesome content instead. After all, social media is a saturated landscape and brands need to stand out in order for viewers to engage. From Casie’s session, I learned to never pay someone in chips. But seriously – from Casie’s presentation, I really took away the value of utilizing influencers and just how valuable they are as a resource for brands.
Lindsey: Carson taught me that content is the new ad. From that, I deduced that we should be spending more time on amazing graphics and less time worrying about posting something each day if it really isn’t necessary! Casie was the smallest bundle of energy I have ever met! She inspired me to embrace my blogging skills and to not be afraid of selling myself… If not for hard work and self promotion, Casie would not be where she is today!
How do you plan to use the information that you learned in your sessions, in your day-to-day work and play?
Amanda: I am going to think more outside of the box when it comes to content in order to make people stop scrolling on their newsfeeds. This means using advanced reporting tools to see what works and what doesn’t… I will take advantage of what’s working. People want to see themselves in your content. As for blogging, I would like to take this up personally!
Robyn: There are some great tools I learned about that we can incorporate. Also, I’m inspired to experiment – to be bold, be adventurous, be AWESOME!
Kerri: There are certain strategies that I plan on implementing across all clients, including strategies for crisis management, contest implementation, and overall content creation. I feel that several of these apply to a lot of our campaigns. As well, there are some new ideas that I plan on bringing to our internal social media team structure which I believe will help our organization as a whole.
Lindsey: With blogging for clients, I plan to utilize the “X number of ways you can do Y” method in order to gain more website clicks from an interested audience. It is important to build a loyal following – not just traffic. A notable takeaway is definitely how we can better report information and organize data in a way that will allow our company to move forward. If we don’t learn properly from our results, there will be no growth.
What was your favourite part of the conference?
Amanda: Getting to take home Gary Vaynerchuk’s new book was pretty awesome but overall I think it was great to see so many likeminded people come together because they love what they do and were eager to learn more. I think because of that, I was able to learn more from other people, too. I’ll be able to use all of the information that I acquired to grow my professional career and marketing expertise.
Robyn: Such a hard question! I loved the social media screen so that we could see what people were saying about the conference – I loved it even more when my tweets ended up on there! I LOVED the macarons on the Saturday night (I know – lame – but I still loved it). My favourite part(s) were the breakouts! I sat by different people each time and this allowed me to meet new people! Yay! I was also really happy with the sessions that I got!
Kerri: That’s a tough one. Mingling with likeminded individuals and chatting social media and marketing in the Edmonton market was a highlight for me. All of the sessions that I attended had something valuable which I will be able to bring back to our team. I have to admit, learning about how Paper Leaf created and managed the Tweeting Robot, Hugo, was pretty awesome. I think we were also all pretty excited when we won a copy of Gary Vee’s new book, mainly because Chad has great entrepreneurial admiration for him, and we knew he’d be beyond excited to have 3 copies of his book at the office.
Lindsey: I would have to say that my favourite part of the conference was meeting new people and getting to sit beside a new attendee in every session! I loved that I could walk up to anyone and start a conversation because of the awesome energy in the room. Hugo the Talking Robot, from Paper Leaf, was also really great to play around with. OH! And they also catered vegan options at lunch which I very much appreciated!
All-in-all, the SOS team is beyond grateful to have been in attendance at this year’s iMedia Social Media Conference. We will be taking the valuable information learned this past weekend and utilizing it improve our strategies to make 2016 even more fantastic than we already imagined!